We wanted to design an application that focused on the act of negotiating a time and a place to meet a group of friends instead of accepting or rejecting a canned set of plans. The challenge was that despite dozens of event planning apps on the market, users would continually fall back to group texts when planning a gathering. We determined that groups of friends needed an application that could support the decision making process instead of the RSVP process if we were ever going to disrupt that habit.

CRU was founded on the premise that planning social events between friends is less about calendars and ratings than it is negotiation. With hundreds of apps on the market that cater to people who want to announce, promote, and take RSVPs, our group identified a painful lack of support for “crews” of friends who wanted to get together but didn’t have the details set in stone.

Critically speaking, two years of running UX for virtual events makes the necessary UI optimizations seem obvious to a practiced eye(hey, someone forgot to mention the date on an interactive sequence!). In many ways though, designing CRU is what made me a good fit as the virtual events UX lead at Dell Technologies. Here, I design for a different sort of interaction, but the emotional and experiential space is the same. While I’d handle the IxD differently if I prototyped this today, the core of the concept is still a work of insightful beauty.